Recipe & Photos By Tiffany Haugen
Looking for an innovative and impressive way to bake up a trout?
Not only is this method easy, it produces a deliciously steamed, moist, flavorful fish.
Salt-crusting will work with any whole fish; try it with a fresh caught cutthroat, kokanee or small steelhead, or get into the freezer and use up what you caught earlier in the year. Now’s a good time to clean out that freezer and make room for incoming winter steelhead.
For best results, use kosher salt. The amount of salt will vary for the size of the fish. The key with the salt crust is getting the salt moist enough with egg white and water to form around the fish without falling apart. Additional flavorings are endless as the cavity of the fish can be stuffed with any herbs, citrus slices, garlic and/or ginger.
Salt Crusted Trout
- 2-4 trout
- 5 cups kosher salt
- 3 egg whites
- 1-3 tablespoons water
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 cup fresh herbs (parsley, rosemary, dill, thyme, cilantro, basil and/or sage)
- 1 orange, lemon or lime, sliced
- Additional herbs (optional)
In a large bowl, mix salt and egg whites until moistened.
Add enough water for the salt mixture to stick together.
Rinse and pat cleaned fish dry, inside and out.
Divide herbs and citrus slices evenly among fish.
Brush both sides of fish with a light coating of olive oil.
On a large baking sheet, spread a layer of the salt mixture about 1/4” thick for the fish to lay on. If you have additional herbs, put a single layer of leaves on the salt, right where the fish will sit.
Lay stuffed fish on top of the salt or herb layer on the baking sheet.
Mound the rest of the salt mixture on the fish, covering completely.
Pack the salt down evenly and try to keep the shape of the fish intact. If there isn’t enough salt to completely cover the fish, it is fine to leave the head and/or tail exposed.
Bake fish in a preheated, 400º oven, 25-30 minutes or until fish reaches an internal temperature of 135º-140º. If using an oven-safe thermometer, insert probe before baking so the salt crust doesn’t crack when checking the temperature.
Let fish sit 5-10 minutes before cracking the crust and removing.
Skin should lift easily off the fish.
Remove fish fillets from the salt crust prior to serving.
- Recipe & Photos by Tiffany Haugen